Canada and the United Nations

Canada’s Permanent Mission to the United Nations in New York City

The Permanent Mission of Canada delivers on Canada’s multilateral foreign policy priorities at the United Nations Headquarters in New York City. Through diplomacy, negotiation and analysis of UN activities, the Mission works to advance Canada’s interests and strengthen the pillars of the UN: international development, peace and security and human rights.

One of Canada’s key priorities is protecting and enhancing the international rules-based order by championing values of inclusive and accountable governance, including by promoting human rights, women’s empowerment and gender equality and peaceful pluralism.

The Permanent Mission of Canada consists of the following policy sections:

  • The Political Section works to advance Canadian peace and security objectives, including through engagement on crisis management, conflict prevention, peacebuilding and enhancing support for UN Peace Operations. The Political Section covers the Security Council, 1st (Disarmament & International Security), 4th (Special Political & Decolonization) and 5th (Administrative & Budgetary) Committees, and leads on reform initiatives to modernize the UN.
  • The Development Section is engaged in following up on the implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, UN Development system reform and oversight for UN Funds and Programs (UNICEF, UNDP, UNFPA, UN Women). The section, which covers ECOSOC and 2nd Committee (Economic & Financial), also works on climate change action, ocean protection and SDG financing.
  • The Legal, Social and Human Rights Section works to promote respect for human rights, facilitate Canada’s response to humanitarian crisis and further the development of international law and respect for rule of law. The section is also responsible for global refugee and migration issues, gender equality and women’s empowerment, Indigenous affairs, and transnational crime and drugs. The section covers the 3rd (Social, Humanitarian & Cultural) and 6th Committees (Legal).
  • The Military and Police Section provides subject matter expertise to the Ambassador and Political staff on the full range of security considerations and issues related to UN peace operations. The section works to advance Canadian objectives through engagement with the UN and Member States on conflict prevention, peacekeeping, peace enforcement and capacity building. Officers cover the Security Council, 4th Committee (Special Political & Decolonization), C34, and work with military and police experts from Member States to modernize and improve the effectiveness of UN Operations. The section works with the UN on training, deployment of personnel and contingents, and development of peacekeeping policy.

Canada’s Permanent Mission to the World Trade Organization, the United Nations and the Conference on Disarmament in Geneva

The Permanent Mission of Canada to the World Trade Organization, the United Nations and the Conference on Disarmament in Geneva is Canada’s largest multilateral mission. We promote Canadian interests and work with other Member States to develop and uphold international norms and rules whether in terms of trade, health, labour environment, arms control, humanitarian law or human rights.

The Mission of Canada is the primary channel for diplomatic representation and communications between the Canadian government, the United Nations and its associated bodies in Geneva, the World Trade Organization and many other entities based in Geneva.

Ambassador Stephen de Boer is Canada’s Ambassador and Permanent Representative to the World Trade Organization.

Ambassador Leslie E. Norton is Canada’s Ambassador & Permanent Representative of Canada to the United Nations and the Conference on Disarmament in Geneva.

With more than 180 accredited missions (including states/observers), over 20 UN programs, funds, and specialized agencies and over 3,000 accredited civil society organizations, Geneva is a dynamic environment influencing critical global socio-economic and political developments.

Reflecting our whole-of-government and whole-of-Canada orientation, the Mission is comprised of staff from several Canadian departments and agencies, as well as locally engaged personnel. Our Canada-based staff come from Global Affairs Canada, the Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada, Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, and the Department of Finance Canada. Beyond these, our partner departments also include Health Canada, the Labour Program of Employment and Social Development Canada, Environment and Climate Change Canada, Public Safety Canada, the Department of National Defense, Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada , Natural Resources Canada, Transport Canada, the Canada Revenue Agency, the Canadian Food Inspection Agency and the Canadian Intellectual Property Office. Given our unique role in connecting with key international organizations including the UN and WTO, the Mission looks after the interests of Provinces and Territories.

The Mission also provides consular and passport support to the nearly 3,000 Canadians residing and working in Geneva.

Canada and the United Nations



Creating Our Legal Systems
The Idea of Canada
Canada Cares